How to Clean Indoor Mold
If mold is growing in your home, cleaning it up quickly is important. Not only can the mold irritate your allergies, but it can also damage whatever surface it is growing on. These guidelines will help you remove mold:
- If the moldy surface is larger than 10 square feet, consider hiring a contractor to do the job. Be sure the person has experience removing mold.
- If your allergies are severe, ask someone else to clean the mold. If this isn’t possible, wear a facemask while you are cleaning.
- Wear gloves and goggles while cleaning. These items will protect your skin and eyes from the mold. Don’t touch mold with your bare skin.
- Use soap and warm water to scrub mold from hard surfaces, and then make sure the area is completely dry. The American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology also recommends using a bleach solution to clean washable surfaces.
- Once the area is dry, check to make sure that all of the mold has been removed and is no longer growing.
- Never paint or caulk over an area with mold. Remove the mold first.
- It may be impossible to remove mold from porous objects, such as ceiling tiles or carpeting. If these items are moldy, they may need to be replaced.
Preventing Allergies: Keep Outdoor Molds Outdoors
Most exposure to molds happens outside. But mold spores from the outdoors can get into your home through windows and doors and on your shoes and clothing. “A lot of the molds inside your home are brought in from the outside,” Salo tells WebMD.
Use these tips to help limit the molds that enter your home:
- Keep your doors and windows closed when outdoor mold spore counts are high. Use an air conditioner with a HEPA filter instead.
- Leave your shoes at the door so you don’t track mold through your home.
- Take a shower and change your clothes after spending time outside.
- Clean and vacuum regularly. Use a vacuum that has a HEPA filter to catch small particles and dust.
Treat Your Allergies
If limiting your exposure to molds doesn’t relieve your symptoms, you may need other treatment. Over-the-counter (OTC) treatments for allergies include antihistamines and decongestants. Your doctor may prescribe other medications if these don’t provide relief.